New Delhi: It was the most draining tourney
of their nascent boxing careers but World Youth Championships
gold-medallist Vikas Krishan and silver-medallist Shiva Thapa
didn`t have a doctor to take care of their niggles ahead of
their summit clashes in Baku, Azerbaijan.
The volcanic ash cloud over Europe that disrupted air
traffic for a week meant that the championships started a
couple of days later than scheduled, thereby sending the
participating teams` travel plans haywire.
Most of the teams had their return tickets booked for May
2, as per the initial schedule, but after the revised schedule
made May 3 the day of the finals, the organisers decided that
those boxers who didn`t make the semifinals be sent back as
per the original plan.
Seven of the nine Indians in fray had crashed out by the
quarterfinal stage and they departed on May 2 accompanied by
team doctor Nirmolak Singh as "the boys could not have
That was the day of semifinals and Shiva (54kg) ended up
hurting his right hand during the exhausting 11-3 win over a
Russian opponent and didn`t have a doctor to get himself
"But even if a doctor had been there, it wouldn`t have
made a difference as the injury wouldn`t have healed in such a
short time. A doctor from some other team checked Shiva and
helped in whatever way possible," said coach G Manoharan.
Shiva eventually succumbed to a crushing 1-14 defeat in
the finals against a Cuban rival.
Back from the tournament, the two boxers, who also
qualified for the Youth Olympic Games after making the semis
of the World Championship, are now looking forward to a break.
"Some 20-odd days with my family and then I will be back
in the camp to train for the Youth Olympics," said Vikas
"Looking forward to go home after eight months. I can`t
wait to have some home-cooked food. I will have fun for about
15 days before the camp and then it`s back to the grind,"
They had never competed in an international tournament
where the draw was as big as the one in the Championship.
"It was six rounds in my case as I didn`t get a bye and
when I first looked at it, I thought may be I will clear three
rounds but I managed a gold," said Vikas, who had also won a
gold at the Asian Youth Championships in Iran last month.
"It was a draining but unforgettable experience," said
While Vikas idolises home-grown star Vijender Singh,
Shiva looks up to controversial American Mike Tyson.
"He was a great boxer and I don`t have to look at his bad
side. I just need to take inspiration from the fact that he
was an excellent boxer. After all, It`s up to me which side of
him I should look up to," Shiva said.